August 13, 2013 – Mesquite, Texas
Police were dispatched to a school where Graham Dyer, 18, who appeared intoxicated, “ran full speed into an external glass door” and “began slamming his head into the ground.” Cleared for jail transport, he repeatedly hit his head on “the security cage and the back seat” of the patrol car. He was later placed in a restraint chair, until officers noticed his “labored breathing,” at which point he was taken to the hospital where he later died.
Dyer’s parents requested the dash camera video associated with their son’s death but all of their requests were denied by the city of Mesquite. When the city denied their request for records in their son’s in-custody death – and the Texas Attorney General erred in the city’s favor – Robert and Kathy Dyer asked the FBI to investigate by filing a civil rights complaint.
The federal agency looked into the case but said it could not find sufficient evidence to move forward with a civil rights lawsuit on the couple’s behalf. However, it was able to release evidence it had gathered since it is not bound by Texas law. This gave the Dyers a backdoor way to obtain the video.
Where to file a complaint: https://www.fbi.gov/investigate/civil-rights